Melton Council offices to be lit up in pink and blue to support bereaved parents
A show of support for bereaved parents is to be signified by the illumination of the Melton Borough Council offices in vibrant pink and blue lighting.
The gesture, which will take place at Parkside in the evenings between October 9 and 15, is part of a nationwide effort to mark the 16th annual Baby Loss Awareness Week.
It won’t cost the council anything since the existing exterior lighting will be in operation with pink and blue light coverings, provided by a local business, used to create the splash of colour.
Buildings across the UK will be lit up in the official colours of the campaign week, which is an opportunity for bereaved parents, families and friends, to commemorate babies’ lives and break the silence around pregnancy and baby loss in the UK.
Councillor Alan Pearson, chair of the People Committee, said: “We hope turning Parkside pink and blue will spark conversations about baby loss and give local bereaved parents and families an opportunity to talk about their precious babies.
“Baby Loss Awareness Week helps raise awareness of how pregnancy and baby loss affects thousands of families each year across the UK.
“It is an opportunity to help families remember their babies, whether it be in public or private, and feel less isolated and alone by giving them the opportunity to join with others.”
Councillor Pearson thanked Melton florist’s, The Flower Basin, for providing the council with the ribbons and pink and blue light coverings which will enable the tribute to take place with the external lighting.
Residents who have suffered the loss of a baby are already able to remember them through a baby memorial garden set up in Melton Country Park, primarily through the efforts of resident Cara Lilley.
Caraa, who lost her son, James, at 25 weeks, said: “We found that many families of lost babies, actually had no place to visit, no grave to mark their babies’ names, and many of those who did have a grave, simply found it too difficult to find any comfort there.
“After what seemed like a very short discussion, it was agreed we should make a garden.
“With great support from Melton Borough Council, the country park and many, many local organisations and businesses, the dream became a reality and we have a beautiful baby memorial garden in the park, a special garden with soft planting to produce an element of beauty and healing, which also incorporates areas where bereaved families can go and plant a bulb for their lost babies or leave a pebble in a permanent memorial.“
The lighting up gesture at Melton’s council offices was praised by the charity Sands (stillbirth and neonatal death).
Its chief executive, Dr Clea Harmer, said: “Baby Loss Awareness Week is a unique opportunity for parents to commemorate their babies who died, and I hope bereaved families in Melton Mowbray seeing Parkside exterior lights lit up pink and blue will feel less isolated and alone in their grief.
“Pregnancy loss or the death of a baby is a tragedy that affects thousands of people every year.
“It is devastating for parents and families and it’s vital they get the bereavement support and care they need, for as long as they need it.”
Residents can share their images of the lit-up council offices by posting them on social media using the hashtag #BLAW2018 to get them featured on an interactive map and Facebook album for the special week.
Go online at www.babyloss-awareness.org to find out more about it.